I have one word and one word only.


I really don’t want to discuss it.

No, I really don’t want to discuss it.

How does one even eat that thing? Do you eat the bottom stem-like part? Because I definitely cut that off.
Here’s the deal.

I fried up one piece of bacon and let all the drippings get happy in the pan. My, oh my does bacon grease thrill me like nothing else on this planet. (That’s probably half of my problem.)

Then I caramelized the onion in the bacon grease, added the potato, added the brussels sprouts, and later finished it off with some balsamic vinegar at high heat.

So they come off the stovetop. I sit down and mind you, I was starving. I mean, bring out that bacon and I basically shift in to Pavlov’s dog regardless of what time of day it is. I push the sprouts around, hoping that they will disappear and search for crumbly little bacon bits. Then I decided to make this quick and painless and I eat one.

I sort of liked it. Maybe “like” isn’t the right word. But I don’t hate it.

This can’t be right, I’m thinking. So I eat another one. They were actually kind of good. You know, good in the way that they didn’t make me want to vomit.
So I kept on eating them. And lo and behold, I ate every single one you see on that plate!

Okay. So it was only 4 brussels sprouts. I know. But I cut them in half so really I ate 8, right?

And you’re right – I did eat them fast because I might have made a deal with myself that I couldn’t even touch the bacon and potatoes until the green things were gone. So yes: I bribed myself with bacon.

But still – they weren’t terrible.
The bad news is that I’ve tried eating brussels sprouts in different ways (roasting, etc) and have had to admit defeat. I don’t really think brussels sprouts and I will be hopping on the love boat anytime soon, unless I can continue to romance bacon and potatoes on the side.

Potatoes, Bacon and Brussels Sprouts

serves 2

2 potatoes, chopped (I used yukon gold)

1/4 vidalia onion, chopped

1 slice bacon

8-10 brussels sprouts

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Chop bacon and add to skillet, frying until brown. Remove bacon bits and let drain on paper towel. Add the onion to the bacon drippings and sprinkle with salt. Caramelize for 2-3 minutes, then add chopped potatoes. Saute for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Chop brussels sprouts in half and add to the pan, flat side down. Let cook for 5 minutes. Flip brussels sprouts and cook for 5 more minutes.

Add balsamic vinegar and stir. Cook for 2-3 more minutes. Remove from pan and sprinkle with bacon. Season with salt and pepper if needed.

Well… this changes everything.



Check out my post over at Zesty Cook! It involves one of my favorite snacks.

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118 Responses to “Potatoes, Bacon and… Brussels Sprouts?!”

  1. #
    Tracy — September 21, 2010 @ 9:43 am

    I’m not a huge fan of Brussels sprouts either…but I’d try this!


  2. #
    Blond Duck — September 21, 2010 @ 9:44 am

    You’re braver than me. I would have stuck with the bacon and taters!


  3. #
    Tyler — September 21, 2010 @ 9:49 am

    awesome! maybe i can trick my boyfriend into eating brussels sprouts by cooking them with bacon ;)


  4. #
    Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) — September 21, 2010 @ 9:59 am

    Brussles are a cruciferous veggies, related to broccoli, cauliflower and some lesser knowns. But they have a high sulfur content that’s released when cooked. Some people are just never ever going to be ok with that. Bacon grease or not :) That’s your food science trivia du jour :)


  5. #
    Brad Fallon — September 21, 2010 @ 10:32 am

    Yikes, Brussels Sprouts are just hideous but maybe bacon could cure it:)


  6. #
    Leah @ Why Deprive? — September 21, 2010 @ 10:55 am

    This looks so good!! Of course, I love brussels sprouts, so Im an easy sell. I know, I’m crazy, but I actually think theyre delicious. Even my mom is disappointed in me for that one. :)


  7. #
    Jenna — September 21, 2010 @ 11:01 am

    I saw the Twitter exchange between you and Lo yesterday and couldn’t wait to see what you had up your sleeve. These look wonderful!


  8. #
    Kate @ Cozydelicious — September 21, 2010 @ 11:08 am

    You are so funny! Ok, I actually LOVE brussel sprouts. But my husband is in your camp – won’t touch ’em. Unless I shred them up and then fry them. Seriously, if you get the courage to try again, tru either slicing them super thin or shredding on a mandoline slicer, and then saute in bacon fat with a bit of garlic. Total texture change, so you might enjoy!


  9. #
    Naomi(onefitfoodie) — September 21, 2010 @ 11:19 am

    i LOVE BS’s but I like to have them mixed with different veggies. Something like cauliflower which I love I can eat just by itself, but too many BS’s and I get uninterested…I do love them though!!!


  10. #
    the country cook @ Delightful Country Cookin' — September 21, 2010 @ 11:34 am

    Love them! I thought they would be gross until my husband made me try one…now I’ve been converted. They are like mini heads of lettuce! I’ve had them with bacon and water chestnuts and loved it. We’ll have to try the addition of balsamic vinegar…sounds excellent!


  11. #
    Amanda — September 21, 2010 @ 11:59 am

    So impressed with all of your creative and mouthwatering and healthy and delicious looking recipes of late… you are quite the talent my dear!



  12. #
    Emily @ For Sweets Sake — September 21, 2010 @ 12:13 pm

    Brussel sprouts are hard! even for veggie lovers! They are one of about 3 vegetables that I can’t stand haha so I’m very proud of you for eating all of yours! :)


  13. #
    Yum Yucky — September 21, 2010 @ 1:32 pm

    You have ESPn. How’d you know I was cooking brussels tonight? Your way is much bettah than boiling the hell out of it like I was going to do.


  14. #
    Nicole @ Making Good Choices — September 21, 2010 @ 1:52 pm

    haha this made me laugh out loud! I cut off the bottom too, I think your supposed to?


  15. #
    Lisa @bakebikeblog — September 21, 2010 @ 3:33 pm

    I actually LOVE brussels :) So I must try adding balsamic next time too!


  16. #
    homecookedem — September 21, 2010 @ 4:22 pm

    I love brussels sprouts, but if we’re being honest, I’d much rather have chocolate! ;)


  17. #
    Simply Life — September 21, 2010 @ 4:26 pm

    Wow, nice work! I’ve had a couple failed attempts with brussel sprouts and haven’t wanted to venture with them since. This helps change that perspective :)


  18. #
    Kristin Pan — September 21, 2010 @ 4:54 pm

    Try splitting them, simmering in water until bright green and slightly tender and then do a saute in a little olive oil until browned. Hit them with some kosher salt. Delicious! (Last Thanksgiving I fried up one slice of bacon to render some fat and then did a saute in that, people ate them up no problem!)


  19. #
    Kat — September 21, 2010 @ 6:10 pm

    I’m not a bacon eater, but that idea sounds delish. Personally, after I roast brussels sprouts (I cut off that hard bottom-thingy too), I have different sauces to dip them in like BBQ, Dijon and a Lemon-Garlic Aioli. It makes the whole affair FAR better. I just don’t think I have it in me to eat them sans-sauce.


  20. #
    Lindsay — September 21, 2010 @ 6:52 pm

    Yay! I’m so glad you didn’t hate them – Brussels sprouts are one of my absolute favorites!


  21. #
    shannon — September 21, 2010 @ 7:17 pm

    I am totally like you. Veggies are eww, but bacon is dreamy. But I’m trying, and maybe, just maybe I could try a brussel sprout prepared this way! Thanks!


  22. #
    marla {family fresh cooking} — September 21, 2010 @ 7:44 pm

    I love brussels sprouts no matter what- but with bacon anything and everything is better. Glad to read tou are eating your veggies :)


  23. #
    Jocelyn @ Peace.Love.Nutrition — September 21, 2010 @ 8:40 pm

    ooo those look delicious! I haven’t made Brussels sprouts since I managed to burn 2 cups of them a few months ago–oops!


  24. #
    Cynthia (It All Changes) — September 21, 2010 @ 9:37 pm

    I can only eat them in Whole Foods roasts them. They must put some magic fairy dust on them before hitting the oven because they taste NOTHING like mine. Otherwise they just remind me of baby Cabbage Patch Kids. :-)


  25. #
    Shannon @ bakeandbloom.com — September 21, 2010 @ 10:38 pm

    Maybe I am a bit of a granny at heart but I love brussels sprouts. I like them best with breadcrumbs fried with garlic, lemon zest, finely chopped parsley & parmezan.


  26. #
    Nicole, RD — September 22, 2010 @ 2:56 am

    I love brussels sprouts! Try them roasted with EVOO, pecans, and LOTS of bleu cheese…YUM!


  27. #
    kelsey@snackingsquirrel.com — September 22, 2010 @ 1:21 pm

    omg its so true!! my mom used to put bacon and brussel sprouts together for dinner and THE COMBO WAS DELICIOUS!! thats so crazy to see someone else make it!! haha <3


  28. #
    Becca — September 22, 2010 @ 2:18 pm

    You have a wonderful way of showing beauty in disgusting things through pictures. I’m sorry, but I don’t see how the world’s greatest food product (PORK FAT) could make those gaggy things taste any better. The “brussel sprout incident” I had when I was 7 has scarred me for life. I saw your beautiful pictures and STILL threw up in my mouth a little… ew.


    • Jessica — September 22nd, 2010 @ 2:57 pm

      Hahahahah this cracked me. Now you know how I feel about veggies in general. :)


  29. #
    Emily @ The Happy Home — September 22, 2010 @ 3:36 pm

    oh, man. i LOVE brussel sprouts! i roast them in the oven with a ton of olive oil, and usually cover them in pepper and a bit of parmesean cheese. after 45 mins, they’re fork tender and SO GOOD!

    congrats for trying!


  30. #
    Pretty. Good. Food. — September 22, 2010 @ 3:46 pm

    I love brussel sprouts, this sounds delish!


  31. #
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — September 22, 2010 @ 6:51 pm

    I’m impressed that you ate Brussels sprouts! They are actually one of my favorites… and cooking them in bacon fat is the way to go! :)


  32. #
    Trish — September 22, 2010 @ 7:23 pm

    Oh…my….yum. I love everything about this meal. I’m one of those weird veggie lovers your mom warned you about. And the addition of bacon is always welcome :-)


  33. #
    Window On The Prairie — September 23, 2010 @ 6:44 am

    Finally a recipe that just might make brussel sprouts edible. :) http://windowontheprairie.com/ Suzanne


  34. #
    Stacy @ Student of Healthy Living — September 24, 2010 @ 9:57 am

    Your awesome recipe and amazing pictures have inspired me to face my fear, and try brussel sprouts! I am going to follow this recipe because it sounds so delicious :) Thanks for posting it!


  35. #
    Debbi Does Dinner Healthy — September 25, 2010 @ 4:00 pm

    I am so with you! I can’t stand brussels sprouts either! I hadn’t had them in YEARS and wondered if I still hated them so I bought a back last winter and roasted some but just didn’t like them. At. All. I gave the rest away!

    I can see where they would be more tolerable with bacon and the balsamic vinegar.

    Good for you on trying them!


  36. #
    Sara — September 26, 2010 @ 5:40 am

    I am not a brussel sprout person either!! But I had them very similar to the way you made them, but instead of balsamic vinegar, try squeezing fresh lemon juice over them! I couldn’t believe how good they were!!!


  37. #
    LauraJayne — January 11, 2011 @ 4:30 pm

    So I used to hate brussel sprouts. Hate them. But I found a recipe that included dijon mustard and pine nuts (and salt and pepper, of course) and while I do not hate them, I actually almost enjoyed them. In fact, I’m making them again this week!


  38. #
    Charlotte — January 26, 2011 @ 7:56 pm

    Ok so for all of us that have a HORRIBLE memory of brussel sprouts…mine was caused by my elementary school cafeteria…food left on your plate=no recess!!! I remember they used to just steam them or boil them…eewww!
    well i found a recipe that not only renewed my love for brussel sprouts but made them my FAVORITE veggie dish
    I dont have the exact recipe but its super easy…
    -Fry a few slices of bacon in a pan and keep the drippings.
    -Take bacon out and crumble it.
    -Add some chicken broth and a good tablespoon of brown sugar to drippings and get it to boil.
    -Once the mixture is at a boil, throw in your sprouts cut in halves and bring it down to a simmer.
    -Cover it until you get to the texture you prefer and until you get the sprouts nicely caramelized.
    -Toss in the bacon bits and voila!!!

    A dellliiicious new dish to try!


  39. #
    Molly — March 4, 2011 @ 12:23 am

    Definitely using an extra piece of bacon next time :-) other than that this was such a nice change to just roasting them; thanks for the inspiration!


  40. #
    Heidi — March 19, 2011 @ 8:57 am

    Spruiten zijn zeer lekker als je ze juist klaarmaakt, probeer het eens op deze manier en laat me weten hoe je het vind. Ik heb het in google translate vertaalt want mijn engels is niet ok.

    Benodigdheden voor 4 personen
    ° 32 spruiten
    ° echte boter
    ° 4 eetlepels gerookte spekreepjes
    ° peper & zout
    ° nootmuskaat
    ° snuifje kristalsuiker

    ° snij het ‘kontje’ van de spruiten en haal de buitenste bladjes eraf
    ° snij de spruiten in 2 of 4, afhankelijk van de grootte
    ° breng gezouten water aan de kook in een kookpot
    ° leg de spruitjes erin en laat 2 tot 3 min koken tot ze halfgaar zijn
    ° giet ze af en spoel ze goed af met ijskoud water
    ° smelt de boter in een kookpot en stoof het spek even aan
    ° doe de spruitjes erbij en laat alles aanstoven
    ° kruid met peper, zout en nootmuskaat
    ° voor de kinderen mag je de spruiten bestrooien met een snuifje suiker

    Ingredients for 4 people
    ° 32 sprouts
    · Real butter
    ° 4 tablespoons smoked bacon
    Salt & Pepper
    ° nutmeg
    ° pinch granulated sugar

    · Cutting the ‘ass’ of the sprouts and pull off the outer bladjes
    · Cutting the sprouts in 2 or 4, depending on the size
    · Bring salted water to a boil in a pot
    · Put the sprouts in and let boil 2 to 3 minutes until half cooked
    · Pour and rinse them thoroughly in cold water
    ° melt the butter in a saucepan and cook the bacon briefly
    · Stop the sprouts and cook stew
    · Therapeutic with salt, pepper and nutmeg
    ° for the children you may sprinkle the sprouts with a pinch of sugar


  41. #
    Emma @ Getting There & Going Places — July 11, 2011 @ 5:52 pm

    I absolutely love brussel sprouts!
    I don’t think there is a kid in the world that likes them, until they come across that one recipe! :D
    It’s just one of those types of food we have to learn to love! :P like kale, which I still cannot stand.. *shivers* :P


  42. #
    Lmac — November 21, 2011 @ 8:26 am

    I know this is an old post, but I hope you get this anyway.

    I made these for my boyfriend last night. I am pretty sure he fell in love with me all over again!

    Thanks! Love your blog!


    • Jessica — November 21st, 2011 @ 11:22 am

      So glad!


  43. #
    Denise Soulliere — February 1, 2012 @ 8:52 pm

    I just made these and I substituted regular potatoes with sweet potatoes. It was delicious! I added some extra bacon as well. So good. Now I just have to make this again for my boyfriend who swears that brussel sprouts are the devil. It will happen. Love you Jess!


  44. #
    Catherine — April 25, 2012 @ 7:32 pm

    Try chopping the brussel sprouts or shred them before you saute them with the browned chopped bacon, garlic and scallions. Throw in a handful of slivered almonds and brown them along with the sprouts.
    Outrageous. I never liked brussel sprouts but now they are my new little passion.


  45. #
    Devon — February 11, 2014 @ 6:06 pm

    I have to say – I remember when this was posted a few years back, and it makes me laugh that you have so many brussels sprouts recipes on the blog now! (not complaining at all – I love them!!)



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